Sandbox / Decker

Decker is a comedy-action web series, later tv show, which follows began in 2014 as a spinoff/tie-in to the web series On Cinema with many of the stars and recurring guests of that show doing roles in Decker. The series follows CIA agent Jack Decker, played by Tim Heidecker, who fights terrorism and fights for the American way generally because US President Davidson, played by Joe Estevez, usually lacks the courage to do so. Tim's on cinema co-star Gregg Turkington also appears in the series as Special Agent Jonathan Kington, the master of codes and movie buff, just like Gregg's persona in On Cinema. It is a spoof of actions films and has deliberate bad acting, writing and special effects.

Its first three seasons (Classified, Port of Call: Hawaii, and Decker vs Dracula) aired on the Adult Swim website while season 4 Decker Declassified aired on the Adult Swim tv network and Season 5 (Unsealed) is slated to have a similar release. The series is frequently mentioned in On Cinema, where Tim and Gregg serve as regulars, and is often a source of tension on that show.


This show provides examples of:

  • Accidental Misnaming: Decker (and, in the On Cinema universe, Tim) usually call Kington either "Klington" or "Kingston".

  • Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: In season 2, Decker takes Kington to the USS Arizona Memorial Visitor Center, which provides information about the Pearl Harbor attack, to give him an understanding of why they are fighting terrorists. Decker even dives in the ocean to retrieve his grandfather's, who died during the pearl harbor attack, dog tags

  • Author Appeal: Kington is an avid movie buff, and often snacking on popcorn, is shared by his actor's, Gregg Turkington, On Cinema persona.

  • Blatant Lies: Inside Decker: Unclassified features this clip from Tim Heidecker, played over the top of highlights of bad chroma keying and Birdemic-esque stock animations of explosions seen in Decker: Port of Call: Hawaii.
    "Of course the special effects in Hawaii takes it to the next level. We're working with some of the Premiere technology experts out there to create effects that you haven't seen before - it makes you feel like you're really there, and the technology really makes us able to tell stories that we were never able to tell before because, uh, it's so advanced."

  • Bond Gun Barrel: In Gregg's Decker Versus Dracula: The Lost Works which highlights what the ending of Decker vs Dracula would have been like, it features Kingston in a very bond like gun barrell sequence though he is holding a crucifix instead of a gun.

  • Canon Discontinuity: Tim considers Decker vs Dracula to be outside of the Decker Canon to the annoyance of Gregg. Dracula is brought back in Unclassified though

  • Captain Obvious: "Michael Victor. That's M as in Michael."

  • Colon Cancer: Decker: Port of Call: Hawaii

  • Cut Short: The third season, Decker vs Dracula, was abruptly cut after 3 episodes because tim didn't like this seasons and episode 4 is just a message saying its cancelled while Dekkar's, Tim's band, song Empty Bottle plays for most of the episode. 2 additions videos have been made though with the first by Tim to explain why its cancelled, generally blaming the artisiic choices by Gregg, while the other is by Gregg who explains what the ending could have been like.

  • Deliberately Monochrome: When Decker uses a time machine to go back in time to 1941 Japan to stop Pearl Harbor, the setting during that period is in black and white while present day and future scenes are in color.

  • Determinator: Jack Decker is always willing to fight for America's freedom

  • Faceless Goons: Most of the mooks wear a bandit mask which hides their faces.

  • False Friend: Lanoi Arnold. He was Decker's oldest friend and seem to welcome him warmly when Decker came to Hawaii for vacation but Arnold had already betrayed him to the Taliban in exchange for money to renovate his bar

  • Fatal Flaw: Gregg obsession with movies caused him to accept a bugged VHS tape which allow terrorists to learn Decker's plan.

  • The Future: Decker Unclassified takes place in 2076.

  • Genre Shift: Decker vs Dracula incorporates horror, particularly universal monster horror, into the otherwise political thriller based series since Gregg had creative control during that season. This is cut after the season is abruptly cancelled and returns as a political action thriller in Decker Unclassified until the last episode of the season where its revealed that Dracula was working with the first lady

  • Guy Liner: Decker (and perhaps some of his bandmates) is seen wearing it during the "trigger everything" performance.

  • Haunted Castle: Dracula lives in one and is the base of operations for his league of monsters.

  • The Hero: Jack Decker

  • Ideal Hero: Jack Decker is portrayed as this, fighting for the America and its Freedom and is generally always morally in the right.

  • In Memoriam: Episode 5 of Decker Unclassified is dedicated to musicians who died in airplane disasters.

  • Insane Troll Logic: Decker is in Hawaii when the island is taken over by terrorists. He tries to contact Kington only to find out that he is also in Hawaii:
    Decker: "You mean to tell me Agent Klingstlin is in Hawaii? That's where the terrorists are. Kingston's working with terrorism."

  • Legion of Doom: Various monsters like Dracula, Frankestein, Wolfman and the Mummy team up to take over the world during Decker vs Dracula.

  • Meaningful Name: Decker and Kington are named for their actors, Tim Heidecker and Gregg Turkington.

  • Middle Eastern Terrorists: The Taliban and Al Queda are often the villains in the series.

  • Mockumentary: Decker Vs. Dracula: Behind The Truth is Tim Heidecker's attempt to explain the cancellation of Decker vs. Dracula using behind-the-scenes footage. It features an intro and outro clearly made in iMovie and interludes with scrolling, typo-ridden passages which are displayed in Papyrus and also read aloud by Tim.
    Lunch being late may seem like a small isue to those not in the film business but it is a mark of PROFFESSIONALISM and which was very lacking on Gregg's production

  • My Country, Right or Wrong: Decker is always willing to save America from danger even though he hates President Davidson's policies.

  • Overly Long Gag: Decker: Classified episode 4 features a motorbike scene lasting over a minute. An overlay for the first 20 seconds plots his journey on a map and then disappears, and the rock music playing in the background eventually comes to a stop, only to start playing a few seconds later. And then do it again.
    • Decker: Unclassified shows Decker aboard a plane, trying to tell the pilot's name, "Michael Victor", to Kington over a radio link. After saying the name, he begins to spell it out loud using the phonetic alphabet, and Kington tries to interrupt him with "Got it. Michael Victor." halfway through. He doesn't stop.

  • Patriotic Fervor: Decker deeply cares for America and is willing to do whatever is necessary to protect America and Freedom

  • Plot Hole: In Decker Unclassified, it is shown that Decker found out that Abdul was a terrorist even before Decker completed his green beret training. Yet back in the first season of Decker, which chronically takes place after his training is complete, he did not suspect Abdul as a terrorist when he provided Decker intel about the terrorists.

  • Previously On: Each episode of Decker: Classified (apart from the first one) starts with a recap of the last one starting with "Previously on Decker". Decker: Port of Call: Hawaii uses "Previously on Decker season 2". Decker vs. Dracula only does this once, in episode 3, and presents the recap as a Silent Film.

  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: In a somewhat breaking the fourth wall break, Kington walks off the set in episode 5 of Decker Unclassified after its revealed Dekkar (Tim's band in On Cinema) is to appear in the episode since Gregg dislikes the band. He does come back later in the episode though.

  • Shameless Self-Promoter: Somewhat in universe example (in regards to on cinema). Show's creator Tim Heidecker. A significant portion of Episode 5 of Decker Unclassified is used to promote Tim's On Cinema band Dekkar. The episode even contains part of their "Trigger Everything" music video.

  • Show Withina Show: It is the show in the On Cinema webseries. It is type 1 (characters involved in production) as the "characters" in on cinema are the ones acting in Decker. Also Type 3 (show is a plot point) as it is often referenced in on cinema as a source of drama between Tim and Gregg.

  • Tagline: Decker Classified "The law has limits, he does not" (which is the same tagline as film/Jack Reacher, which Tim cited in on cinema as his favourite film)
  • The Smart Guy: Special Agent Jonathan Kington who lives up to his title as master of codes. Like Gregg's on cinema persona, Kington also appears to have expert knowledge of films as well.

  • Training Montage: There is one when Kingston is overseeing the training of Decker's son and the progress he makes.

  • Trojan Horse: One of Decker's missions involve him using the band Dekkar (Tim's band from on cinema) as a cover to get into a party where a terrorist group is attending.

  • Waving Signs Around: In episode 2, while walking to the white house, Decker encounters a group of sign waving protesters, with signs like "Keep USA Free" and "Treat Arabs Fairly", whom he doesn't particularly like.

  • Video Full of Film Clips: Dekkar's "You Asked for a Hero" music video consist primarily of clips from Dekkar Unsealed with a few shots of Axiom singing in a studio.

  • You Have No Idea Who You're Dealing With: President Davidson says "do you know who i am" after getting captured by terrorists though it isn't particularly threatening sounding as much as it is desperate after failing in an attempt to warn Decker about an inside mole.


Trivia:

  • The Cast Showoff: Episode 5 of Decker Unclassified is meant to showcase Tim's band Dekkar, even featuring part of their music video for Trigger Everything. May potentially be done as parody.

  • Channel Hop: Decker was originally released through youtube though Decker Unclassified got a tv release on Adult Swim (all seasons though are available to view on the Adult Swim website).

  • Troubled Production: somewhat in universe in the context of on cinema. Tim and Gregg clash over certain artistic choices, especially on Decker vs Dracula as shown in a video Tim posts to explain why that season was cancelled. Given Tim and Gregg are acting in their on cinema personas during the behind the scenes video, there's no indication there was legit trouble with the production of Decker.

  • What Could Have Been: Gregg made a video showing what the ending of Decker vs Dracula might have been like if it wasn't cancelled after 3 episodes (he apparently planned it to be 20)


YMMV:

  • Fan Disservice: Tim is shown at the beach with only his swim shorts. He doesn't exactly have the muscular body that most action stars have.
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